About Gal James

Israeli spinto-soprano Gal James has established herself in recent years on the European opera and concert stages as an artist of unusual sensitivity and great vocal beauty.

Recent operatic highlights include her debut at the Bregenzer Festspiele in the title role of Goldschmidt’s Beatrice Cenci, Agathe in Der Freischütz at the Grafenegg Festival, Rusalka at Semperoper Dresden, Rachel/La Juive at Opera Vlaanderen, Arabella for Theater St. Gallen and Mimi/La Bohème at the Palau de les Arts Valencia, under Riccardo Chailly (released on DVD), and at Opera Vlaanderen and Rusalka at Vienna State Opera.

As an ensemble member of Oper Graz Gal James performed the roles of Jenufa, Rusalka, Manon Lescaut, Eva/Die Meistersinger von Nūrnberg, Contessa, Donna Anna/Don Giovanni, Marguerite, Desdemona/Otello, Chrysothemis, Liù/Turandot, Micaëla, Marietta/Die tote Stadt and Elsa/Lohengrin.

In 2016, Gal James joined the ensemble of Oper Leipzig, where she has since appeared as Rusalka, Contessa/Le Nozze di Figaro, Mimi, Chrysothemis/Elektra, Marguerite/Faust, Micaëla/Carmen, Liù/Turandot, Freia/Das Rheingold, Gutrune/Götterdämmerung, Agathe, Elisabetta/Don Carlo and Gerhilde in Walküre.

In the 2020/21 season, Gal James will return to Oper Leipzig to reprise the roles of Mimi, Micaëla, Freia, Gutrune and sing 1. Dame in Die Zauberflöte. With the Noord Nederlands Orkest she will perform Gorecki’s Symphony no 3 and she is looking forward to returning to the Bregenzer Festspiele at the end of the season.

On the concert platform, Gal James has performed Mendelssohn’s Elias with the Berliner Philharmoniker, Strauss’ Vier letzte Lieder with LaVerdi in Milan, the Bochumer Symphoniker, the Oslo Philharmonic and the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Rossini’s Petite messe solennelle at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam, Mendelssohn’s Psalm 42 with the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra, a selection of Strauss songs with the Grazer Philharmonisches Orchester at the Wiener Musikverein, Bernstein’s Jeremiah Symphony and Beethoven's Symphony no 9 with the Bochumer Symphoniker and the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra, Shostakovich’s Symphony no 14 with the Netherlands Chamber Orchestra and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra under Vasily Petrenko (both released on CD).

In her home country, she has appeared with the Israeli Chamber Orchestra, the Israeli Philharmonic Singer’s Chorus, at the Jerusalem Music Center, the Abu-Gosh Festival and with the Jerusalem Symphony Orchestra.

Conductors and directors she has worked with include Daniel Barenboim, Seiji Ozawa, Neeme Järvi, Steven Sloane, Ulf Schirmer, Julien Salemkour, Johannes Debus, Ion Marin, Dirk Kaftan, Dan Ettinger, Jukka-Pekka Saraste, Tomas Netopil, Hervé Niquet, Michael Boder, Stefan Herheim, Johannes Erath, Peter Konwitschny and Robert Carsen.

Ms James has won several awards, including third prize at the 2006 Belvedere Competition in Vienna, first prize in the 2005 Aviv Vocal competition, first prize at the Voice Competition of the Rubin Academy of Music at Tel-Aviv University, her alma mater. After graduating as a cello player, she studied voice, coached by Prof. Mira Zakai. She is a former member of the opera studio of the Staatsoper Berlin and continues to study with Patricia McCaffrey.

Gal James


Berlin, Germany
Grant Recipient